Although your acne blemishes will heal, the scars they leave do not always go away without professional help. Acne scars come in many forms and can be a challenge to get rid of. Treatments for these scars may include lasers, dermal fillers, or other methods.
What Causes Acne Scars?
Acne blemishes develop when pores (oil glands) on the face or other areas become blocked with oil, dirt, and dead skin cells. Mild acne often fades with no scarring. More severe acne can become inflamed by bacteria, and this inflammation can travel deeper into the skin.
As a result, these more inflamed blemishes are more likely to leave scars. You are also more likely to have acne scars if you pick or disturb your blemishes. This can introduce bacteria and trigger the development of scar tissue.
How Long Does it Take for Acne Scars to Fade?
Mild acne can leave some dark (pigmented) spots that can fade over time, especially with topical products like salicylic acid. Raised or indented acne scars form because of how the skin heals in response to acne, and topical treatments are not very effective.
Topical treatments will not treat significant pigmentation issues, either. Fortunately, acne scars can be treated with various methods that can provide significant improvement.
How are Acne Scars Treated?
Lasers and other acne scar treatments can dramatically improve the evenness and smoothness of your skin. Treatment requires a customized plan targeted toward your type and distribution of scars.
Fraxel® Laser for Acne Scars
If you have small, shallow acne scars, this laser treatment can help. Fraxel® uses pulses of laser energy that create microscopic zones of tissue coagulation in the skin. The cells around these areas of damage respond with a powerful healing response that increases dermal collagen and smooths skin texture.
Deep Fx™ CO2 Laser for Acne Scars
If you have larger or deeper scars, we may recommend this powerful CO2 laser. It penetrates deeply enough to remove scar tissue and trigger skin rejuvenation that replaces scars with a smoother, more even surface. Although this treatment has more downtime than a less powerful laser, it can reach deeper scar tissue.
Other Acne Scar Treatments
Individual sunken scars can be treated by injections of a dermal filler. Dr. Langdon can also remove some individual scars by excising them and replacing them with smaller, less visible ones. Small but deep scars are efffectively treated with TCA-CROSS, in which a strong acid is applied and actually dissolves scar tissue. Treatments like microneedling can resurface the skin and smooth out minor acne scars.
Is There Any Downtime With Acne Scar Treatment?
Most acne scar treatments have little to no downtime. The CO2 laser can cause a few days of redness and sensitivity, while a more gentle laser may minimal recovery time. Dermal fillers have no downtime, and results are visible immediately.
I had 3 treatments with the PicoSure laser to remove 2 black ink tattoos. The tattoos are 20 years old and located on my ankle and lower back. I previously had 12 treatments with a qswitch laser at Cornell and almost gave up as the results were poor in my case. The PicoSure laser at Dr. Langdon’s office was the exact opposite experience. There is much less pain and discomfort with a much quicker recovery time than my Cornell qswitch experience. I hardly noticed any pain after the procedure and even the next day there was no need to address a wound like I did with the Cornell qswitch treatments. The results are unbelievable and the tattoos are now greatly diminished. I anticipate 2 more treatments to completely remove the visible elements of the ink. I also feel the treatment price is fair due to the high cost of this cutting edge laser. It has been a wonderful experience and I would recommend the Langdon center to anyone removing an unwanted tattoo. I was getting very discouraged in the past and the PicoSure laser treatments gave me faith that I will finally be able to remove my tattoos.
Take the Next Step
If you have further questions about acne scar treatment, we encourage you to schedule a consultation at The Langdon Center in Guilford, CT. Call us at 203-453-8625 or fill out our convenient online contact form.